My son's godmother wrote me this week and said, "Girlfriend, it is time to stop feeling guilty."
She is right.
Guilt, when there is no transgression, is a wasted emotion. I may never know the why of my cancer. I may never understand this season and I may question God's plan for me during this time, but there is nothing to feel guilty about.
The guilt was weighing down my fighter spirit. And I am a fighter.
You see, even though I still cry; even though I have pain; even though I have my moments of distress and anxiety, this time has shown me that I have so many amazing people to fight for. My beautiful children, my amazing husband, my awesome family and my phenomenal friends. I have been infused with the spirit of all these amazing people. I do not believe my time here is done--for whatever reason, I have been challenged again by my body and again I will make it healthy to do God's work in the world. I would not have this attitude if I did not have all these amazing people in my life telling me I can.
My buddy Louie calls this, "we are Groot." Together, we are growing into a new tree. We will do this together. There is no "I" in this battle. I am not in this fight against cancer alone. This is not just about me. This is about we and what we will do together.
This togetherness is what I think God means by a community of believers. We have a bigger "church" going on than a brick building when together we are lifting each other up in love.
I once wrote a blog post about the greatest gift you can give someone with an illness like cancer is to tell them "I believe you can conquer this. I believe in you." It's true. We do far more together and are able to accomplish so much more as a community than we can ever do alone. When we believe in each other and the power of the Holy Spirit to work through each of us, we are building something so much stronger than cancer or any other illness.
So, while the future will have it's ups and downs for me, and I will still question: Why? When? How? And I'm sure I will have days where I cry and gnash my teeth, I have hope. I can't say that I don't feel guilty--it comes and goes--but I have hope, because of you all.
We are Groot.